Justice, Judgment & Mercy – Part 7
A Study of Isaiah 59-61
“And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee. Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought. For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted. The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary; and I will make the place of my feet glorious. The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.” Isaiah 60:10-14
And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee. Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.
There is no more significant piece of real estate on the planet than the City of Jerusalem (Mt. Zion). Historically it is the place of the Temple(s) [Ezra 5:15; 1 Kings 6:2; 1 Chronicles 22:5-8] where God established His presence on the earth with His covenant people, Israel. It will ultimately be the seat of the throne of Jesus Christ on the Earth when He returns with His Church to rule and reign.
From Isaiah’s prophecy there will come a day when the wall around Jerusalem will be rebuilt and the sons of those who are strangers to the covenants of Israel will be the ones to rebuild it. The kings of the nations will flock to Jerusalem to pay tribute to Jesus and the gates will never close because there will be kings from every point on earth coming with their riches and stores of wealth to worship Jesus.
The wrath of God was meted out on Israel time and again because of their transgressions and rebellions but He has never forsaken nor forgotten Israel. He will fulfill His covenant to bless them and establish them as the sons of Abraham. Jerusalem and Israel in prophecy are often interchangeable metaphors. In these passages He is clearly talking about the Holy City itself.
“Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee.” Psalm 68:29
Nations shall come to this Holy place and Jerusalem shall be exalted before the world because the presence and person of God, Jesus Christ will be enthroned there.
For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.
Because of God’s great mercy He will welcome whosoever is willing to come under the authority and power of Jesus Christ and worship Him as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. But those who remain in rebellion refusing to acknowledge and worship The Lord at Jerusalem, they and those that inhabit them shall utterly be destroyed and perish.
The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary; and I will make the place of my feet glorious.
The furnishings and décor of the Holy City and the Temple in it shall come from the finest in the world. The place of God’s feet will be the Temple where Jesus Himself shall rule over the nations. And the glory of that place shall not be matched anywhere in all creation.
The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
Nations that enslaved Israel and held her in exile, those who destroyed the Temple and trampled it underfoot, the sons of those who dominated the region with their abominations shall come unto her, bowing in worship to the true and only King over all. Zion shall be the place of His presence and His Holy name shall be lifted up, as He is the Holy One of Israel.
The Church, you and I, and every believer who trusts in Jesus Christ alone for salvation, will be with Jesus in that day. We will be the judges and representatives of His kingdom among the nations.
“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters?” 1 Corinthians 6:2
We too will worship the Lord, but not as slaves or captives, not as strangers and foreigners but as sons and daughters as children of God who will be at home in His presence as family.
In the news recently there was a video of a father who was being videotaped in his office as an official representative of his nation’s government when his little daughter comes boldly joyfully into the room followed by her little brother in a stroller/walker, to the surprise and apparent dismay of the father, who tried to maintain his cool and continue with the interview pushing the daughter gently away until he could be “rescued” from the moment by the nanny or the babysitter.
But when we return with Jesus as the Church, the Redeemed of the Lord, the Sons of God, who will be like Him in every way, we will have access to Him freely and with joyful welcome. Instead of being gently pushed away so that He can take care of “more important” business, we will be His most important business and He will never turn us away.
Even now we enjoy that same relationship with Him. Our Father is never too busy to hear and answer our prayers and petitions and to meet our needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus our Lord.
The glory of the Holy City is Jesus and the glory of Jesus is in His Church, the saints.
“…the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.” Ephesians 1:18-23
Just think of it. You and I as the Church make up the fullness of Jesus who fills everything, everywhere and makes all things complete. Each of us has a portion of and the full measure of the endless glory of God in Jesus Christ now residing in us and we are fully incorporated into His very person.
We are becoming so one with Him that when we do see Him at last, face to face, we shall know Him fully because we shall be like Him.
“Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3:2
This is the mercy of God extended to us and to all who will believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and worship Him alone.